Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Goalie Announcements (Nov 30)

It's a little later than usual, but we have ourselves a quick goalie post, just so we can highlight the survivor pool.

We saw two teams get their wins for the week, as Grant and Stacey M. joined Mike as the surviving teams through two nights of Week Eight and now we have one more survival game tonight, only leaving four more days to get the job done.

John S. gets the highlighted game tonight, as his surprising goalie, Chad Johnson, will get the start for the Flames with the Toronto Maple Leafs in town.  He might get a bit of a bonus too, as the Leafs played last night in Edmonton and that means that Jhonas Enroth is going to get the start tonight.  Enroth has appeared in five games for the Leafs and has yet to register a win, which bodes well for Calgary tonight.

It will be Matt Murray against Thomas Greiss in Brooklyn tonight, as the Penguins and Islanders go head-to-head in this one.  This is the early game on the schedule and it will feature Scott & Dale B.'s goalies here.  Dale is starting to get a bit more traction out of Greiss and he'll be put up to a good test tonight, I'm sure.

Well, we now know who Peter Budaj will be playing for next week and that's Wes.  He'll get to take a peek at both of his goalies in the Sharks and Kings game, as Martin Jones will indeed get the call for San Jose.  Unfortunately, 2 points is not guaranteed for him today, but soon... soon... it will be a real match-up where he can't lose.

Morning Player Notes in the Draft (Nov 30)

The Arizona Coyotes are likely holding their breath with the upper-body injury to defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, as he left the game against the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday night.  There were reports that Ekman-Larsson was seen with his left hand wrapped up after the game, but there has been nothing official given by the team, as of Wednesday morning.  The Coyotes will host the Kings on Thursday night and it seems doubtful that the cornerstone of their blueline will play.

This is Stacey M.'s best defenseman now going down, which certainly has to be a concern.  His 10 points might be a bit of a disappointment to this point in the year, but he's only going to improve on that, if he's playing.

The Boston Bruins have been dealing with some blueline issues of their own and they have been piling on.  On Tuesday night, John-Michael Liles was not in the lineup for the Bruins/Flyers games, thanks to a concussion, which will now keep him on the shelf for at least a week.  Liles suffered the head injury on Sunday against Tampa Bay and the team has now listed him out indefinitely, likely with a trip to the Injured Reserve before too long.

Now Ryan only has two healthy defensemen on his team and there isn't a lot in the way of quality defensemen in the Waiver Draft to choose from.  There's no real indication about when Liles could be back, so if it is a long-term thing, he might be wise to swap him out for anyone who is healthy.

Buffalo Sabres number one goalie Robin Lehner only played in 17+ minutes in last night's game against the Ottawa Senators, before getting lifted due to a hip injury.  There's no word on whether or not this is related to his problem he had last season, but it isn't a good sign, when a goalie is dealing with a hip injury.  The Sabres are suggesting that this is a day-to-day injury, so we'll see how that works out for them.  Their struggles offensively, don't need a goaltending component to them.

Jeremy's goalie survivor status is only a fraction less certain, especially since Lehner is his number two guy and hasn't really been relying on him too heavily.  Nevertheless, that isn't the only game in town and his overall points total isn't giving him much confidence, down in 21st, 30 points out of the money.

The Dallas Stars defensive woes continue and the scratching of John Klingberg, for the second time this season, is a sure sign that things are not very good in Dallas.  Sure, Klingberg is only scoring at half a point per game, not quite where he was thought to be, but it could be a lot more about his defensive game, where his plus/minus rating was well below par, as of Monday's audit.  The Stars dropped another game in Detroit last night, so I would imagine there are going to be more changes.

This is more bad news for Jeremy, who seems to have run out of luck in recent weeks.  His team was in 17th for a few weeks, but this week, with only 1 point, so far, it has dropped down even further.  Maybe all he has to hope for is the goaltending survival.

The hand injury that Bobby Ryan was dealing with earlier this season, has reared its ugly head again.  Last night against Buffalo, Ryan left the game in the 1st period, after he re-aggravated the injury.  The Senators have already come out and said that the scoring forward would not be available for Thursday night's game, at home to the Flyers, but there was no further indication about things being much worse.  It's going to be a lot of wait-and-see.

Wes' team is off to a good start in Week Eight, already posting 8 points through the first couple nights of action, but this injury won't be too pleasing.  Wes' team is one of the few to have already made a pick in the Waiver Draft and it looks like he's going to try and work his team out of the basement, as best he can.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Goalie Announcements (Nov 29)

Out of the only survival game on Monday night, Mike's team, the favourite on the night, was the eventual winner, with the Blues defeating the Stars.  On the plus side, we have 12 games on the schedule on Tuesday night, so there should be lots of opportunities for our surviving teams to keep moving on.

Let's kick off this post with a head-to-head game, as the Buffalo Sabres will be in Ottawa to take on the Senators and Jeremy's Robin Lehner will get the task of Wilton's Craig Anderson.  Wilton has already lost a game this week and it sounds like there is a good chance that Anderson could be vacating the team for his family after this one, so he might really need a win tonight.

Grant gets a shot at a survival win tonight, as Henrik Lundqvist is getting another start for the Rangers tonight and he'll get the test from the visiting Hurricanes, who are sending Cam Ward back to the crease.  Grant's last three weeks have been getting by on a single win, so he could really use a little bit more security in his weeks, especially since this mini-game is his best shot at the money.

Tuukka Rask is going to get the call for Troy's team tonight, as the Boston Bruins are in Philadelphia to take on the Flyers.  The Flyers are still rolling with their number one, Steve Mason, who belongs to Brenda & Seward, who are only 19 points clear of Troy at the start of action on Tuesday.  Troy's team has been waiting until the very last minute in the last couple of weeks, so it would be ideal for his team to get qualified to save on the anxiety.

Tony's Connor Hellebuyck will get the role of playing spoiler tonight in net for the Winnipeg Jets, with the New Jersey Devils in town.  All signs are pointing to a survival start for Stuart's entry into the evening, Cory Schneider, talking about another team that just barely scrapes by, week-to-week.  Four of the seven surviving weeks for Stuart were with just one win and the other three were with two.

Calvin Pickard gets one more start for the Colorado Avalanche tonight, as Semyon Varlamov inches closer to being 100%.  That's okay with Derek B., I'm sure, as those starts have been hard to come by.  Pickard is the one who will stand in the way of Pekka Rinne and a survival win for Stacey M. tonight, with the Predators in Denver for a game.  Stacey and Derek are also tied in the standings to start the night and a win can certainly help swing a team's favour for the overall standings.

In what should be the last survival game of the night, the Minnesota Wild kick off a road trip through Western Canada in Vancouver and they will be sending John S.'s goalie to the crease, as Devan Dubnyk should have the Canucks tonight.  Still unconfirmed at the time of the post, neither Canucks goalie is in the survival pool, so it could either be Ryan Miller for Brenda & Seward or Jacob Markstrom for Clayton and it would do about the same.

The Russian connection goes in Columbus on Tuesday night, as Andrei Vasilevskiy will go for Ryan and the Lightning, while the already-qualified Mike gets another start from Sergei Bobrovsky and the Blue Jackets.  This will also act as a good swing game in the standings, as the two pool teams are only separated by a point today.

Petr Mrazek is getting the call for the Red Wings, to no one's surprise, but definitely Stacey C.'s delight.  With the injury to Jimmy Howard, it will be Mrazek's net for a little while, at least.  The loss for Dallas last night, combined with back-to-back nights, means it should be Kari Lehtonen in net for them tonight, a positive for Dale C..  Stacey's team is 20 points up on Dale's and has yet to make a Waiver Draft pick this week.

Marcin's team is looking to keep his buffer zone tonight with a start from Chicago's Corey Crawford, with the Florida Panthers in town.  Marcin's 3rd place team is still resting comfortably in the money and he could use a couple more points to keep that pace up.  Cam will also get a start tonight, as Roberto Luongo gets back into the Florida net tonight, trying to aid his pool team up from 10th place in the standings.

Although unconfirmed at the time of writing this post, it is fully expected that we'll see a Brian versus Marcie match-up in Edmonton tonight with the Maple Leafs in town to tour the new building.  We should see Frederik Andersen against Cam Talbot in this one, a good battle near the top of the table in the overall standings.

The Canadiens are looking to roll through California with a win in Anaheim tonight, as they send Carey Price out for this game.  Benson is trying to defend 1st place against Brian and only has a few points between the two teams at the start of play.  Dale B. gets a start from his Anaheim keeper, as John Gibson has been given the nod for the Ducks tonight and a win for him could could help him bounce up a few spots in the standings.

In a late Pacific Division match-up, it will be Marcie's Mike Smith taking on Wes' Martin Jones, a very popular match-up of late, as these two teams and goalies have gone head-to-head recently.  Marcie needs 9 points to get back into the money, while Wes needs 7 points to catch Tony for 23rd.  Might be a bit too much for one goalie to muster in one game, but everything helps.